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Women of the Wedding Industry Wednesday: Spring Sweet

I don't always quote scripture, but when I do I usually find myself in the poetry of Ecclesiastes, the wisdom of Proverbs, or the eroticism of Song of Solomon.

And with the changing of the seasons, nothing feels as engraved into my memory of study as this little diddy:

There is a time for everything,

and a season for every activity under the heavens:

a time to be born and a time to die,

a time to plant and a time to uproot,

a time to kill and a time to heal,

a time to tear down and a time to build,

a time to weep and a time to laugh,

a time to mourn and a time to dance,

a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them,

a time to embrace and a time to refrain from embracing,

a time to search and a time to give up,

a time to keep and a time to throw away,

a time to tear and a time to mend,

a time to be silent and a time to speak,

a time to love and a time to hate,

a time for war and a time for peace.

Ecclesiastes 3: 1-8

It's spring in Northern Michigan. And spring in my bones. And there's a beautiful familiarity to what I am feeling right now and what is going on around me too.

A purposeful sense of work, an excitement at seeing new things you forgot existed in the world return. Like irises on the side of our house. I totally forgot those were there.

While I took some time away from social media at the beginning of the month to blissfully digest some mental rest, I was most excited to find my energy for it again because of this blog, and the women whose stories I get to share.

Spring (yes, that's her given ethereal name) was the woman who sold me my wedding dress. That's a special kind of relationship, and Spring is a special woman who has been a part of my Revel Rose journey before it was birthed.

She did things differently as a shop owner. And in an industry that initially can feel sterile, and fake, and a little too raw for a girl who never even wanted to get married, stepping into her boutique shop in Holland was like finding my island. I can't even describe the peace it brought me to walk into her small town America meets Parisian shop.

When I put on my dress for the first time, the one that became my wedding dress, I was alone. And I could breathe. And I held the lace in my hands, and I did a twirl in the mirror and checked out my ass, and every woman who has ever had an emotional response to finding their wedding dress can relate to this feeling. Even if they were least expecting it.

When I told Spring this week how I was having a hard time with the whole social world versus real world dichotomy for some reason, and felt like stepping back, she gave me some wise advice: "Seasons for everything."

Spring it is, my'ladies and gents.


With Spring Sweet, Owner and Creative Guru at Spring Sweet of Holland

Spring Sweet, by Amy Carroll Photography

You're from Holland and your shop is in Holland, and carries your namesake. What does that mean for vulnerability, as well as accountability as a small business owner?

Ooh good question. Naming the shop Spring Sweet was a tough decision, and one I resisted for quite some time. Some people thought it was the obvious answer, but it felt a little pretentious to me. I just wasn't sure I wanted my name on it. But, I came around. It made sense to me because the store has always been an extension of me. I am very purposeful about the merchandise and content of the store. I only buy things I I think it makes sense that the store carries my name. And let's be honest. It's a pretty whimsical name. It just works for a store name : )

I don't think I gave the whole vulnerability/accountability thing much thought when I named it. But, I've definitely thought about that more lately. I think I run my business with the same integrity and accountability that I would have even if it didn't share my name. But, it's definitely something in the back of my mind at times.

The enchanting storefront of Spring Sweet, in Downtown Holland.

What year did you open Spring Sweet and how has the shop changed and evolved since then?

I opened the shop in May of 2011 (coming up on our 8 year anniversary in a couple of weeks!) and it was originally focused more on home goods. We had a VERY small selection of flowers, and about 8 styles of clothing. As each year passed, I started to realize that people wanted more unique clothing options at great prices, more jewelry, and more flowers! So, I started adding more to the mix. Three years later, the owner of September's Bride (the downtown Holland bridal shop) let me know that she was selling her business, and she wondered if I might be interested in buying. That proposition was definitely out of left field. I thought it over for a couple of days and decided that this could be a really interesting and fun business model. (Who doesn't love wedding dresses?!) We renovated their 2 story location to accommodate the original Spring Sweet on the main floor, and moved bridal to the second story. We slowly figured out who we were as a bridal shop, and what kind of dresses we wanted to bring to Holland, and it's been evolving ever since!

The beautiful wallpaper wall at Spring Sweet

When I walked into your shop as a bride in early 2017 as my ONE LAST ATTEMPT to find a wedding dress, it felt immediately different than the other's I had been in, and that set the precedent for an entire experience that just felt right from beginning to end. What was your intention in creating the shop?